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MARUSKIN: The library is not open to the public, but it is not closed

If you hear the library is not open, that only means COVID-19 safety precautions make it impossible for individuals to come inside.

The library is not closed.

Library staff is available, willing and grateful to help you get books, magazines, DVDs, audiobooks and CDs. 

All reference services including copying, scanning and faxing and research are still done free of charge.

Every Clark County Public Library card works. 

At the beginning of this pandemic, the library board, the director and IT staff cleared fines from everyone’s card and renewed accounts until December (when they will automatically be renewed). IT staff warned glitches are possible. If your card does not work, call the library at 859-744-5661.

If you do not have a library card, call the library.

Most library materials are available. The only materials not available are rare Local History Room books, but copies can be made. The only prohibited service is notarizing documents.

The State Library has re-instituted inter-library loan; and librarians can always order books or movies. The only exception is textbooks.

How can you get materials? Easy-peasy. Reserve materials online or call the library.

To reserve materials online, go to www.clarkbooks.org. Click on the “Check Accounts” tab at the top of the page. Choose “Library Accounts (Renew or Place Holds)” in the drop-down menu. You will access the library catalog. At the top of that page is a blue box that reads “My Account.” Click on that box and enter your library card barcode and your PIN.

Once in your account, you will notice possible search methods including a dedicated DVD search and new materials listings.

Find the items you want. Click on “Reserve Item.” If an item is available, your reserve will appear on the notifications screen of a circulation librarian. They will get your item from the shelf, process it, call you when it’s ready and set up a curbside pick-up time.

If you cannot come to the library, an outreach librarian will deliver your materials. There is a “Curbside” tab on the library’s homepage. You can set up curbside or home deliveries there or call.

Documents can be copied or faxed. If you need hard copies of documents, bring them to the front door. A librarian will provide a cart for the documents. Copies will be made and returned to you free of charge.

Many people need copies of Internet and email documents. Reference staff make those daily. Again, call the library. Explain your request. You will get the email address of a reference librarian who will receive your email, make copies and call you when they are available.

You can chat with a reference librarian by using the chat function (it looks like a cartoon voice bubble) on the library’s home page, www.clarkbooks.org.

If you have any questions, call the library or email me at john.clarkbooks@gmail.com. I’ll be glad to help you.

Now, how about some fun?

At 8 p.m. Thursday, join librarian Brad Allard in a game of Trivia Murder Party, a twisted battle of wits from the creators of You Don’t Know Jack.

In this game, battle for your life against a crazed, trivia-obsessed host. Answering difficult questions correctly will get you points, but getting them wrong will force you to the Killing Floor, where you will play a mini-game for your survival. Even if you lose at the Killing Floor, your ghost can still win the overall game. (Fitting for the Halloween season.)

Up to eight players can play at a time, and others can be part of the audience. You will need a device for using Zoom and a mobile device to answer questions. The winner of each round will receive a gift card to the Daily Grind.

Sign up to receive your Zoom invite. Go to CCPL’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/clarkbooks, click on “Events,” choose “Game Night – Trivia Murder Party” and click on the sign-up link.

It’s Halloween week. Masks are a tradition. Remember to wear yours, social distance and wash your hands.


John Maruskin is director of adult services at the Clark County Public Library. He can be reached at john.clarkbooks@gmail.com.